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Covid-19 cases are surging across the world, fueled by highly contagious variants of the coronavirus that are popping up far from where they were first detected.
The spread of these variants, scientists say, highlights how tiny, random changes in the virus’s genetic code threaten to undo progress in beating back a global pandemic that has killed at least three million people. Concerning variants are spreading in the U.S. and Canada, Europe and Latin America.
Scientists say variants can be brought under control with now-familiar public health measures such as mask wearing and social distancing, despite evidence that some strains might evade the immune response triggered by vaccination or a past infection.
In the U.K., for instance, where a variant known as B.1.1.7 drove a deadly new outbreak in the winter, new cases have slowed to a trickle after a strict lockdown and rapid vaccination drive.
Scientists are also hopeful that the current crop of...
The United States is on track to have gathered an oversupply of hundreds of millions of coronavirus vaccine doses by as soon as July, even while many countries in the developing world will have to wait years to vaccinate a majority of their population, according to a report released Thursday by the Duke Global Health Innovation Center.
After an early focus on AstraZeneca and months of turmoil, the European Union is pivoting away from the company’s vaccine. It has reached agreement for a faster rollout of the Pfizer-BioNTech shot.
Envoys meeting in Brussels on Wednesday unanimously supported a draft legal text setting out specifics for “digital green certificates,” according to a diplomat familiar with the private meeting. The documents will provide proof their holders have been vaccinated against the coronavirus, tested negative or have recently recovered from the disease and are considered immune.
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